NEW DELHI: Sheikh Abdullah, Prime Minister of Kashmir, addressing a meeting here today [Nov 27] ... said that Kashmir had acceded to the Indian Union because of economic need. “So far as economic relations are concerned Kashmir’s fate is interlinked with India. We have joined India neither to satisfy Pandit Nehru nor Mr Gandhi nor the Government of India, but to save ourselves from poverty and destruction.” Referring to Pakistan’s challenge to hold a referendum in Kashmir, Sheikh Abdullah said: “I challenge Mr Jinnah to face a referendum. But it must be a referendum of the poor people and not of bureaucrats and conditions must be favourable to the holding of an impartial plebisicite.”

[Meanwhile, as reported from Lahore,] There is absolutely no truth in the rumours ... that the Quaid-e-Azam is seriously ill. There is nothing serious ... says a Press communique issued by the Information Office, Pakistan Government, Lahore. The communique adds: “Owing to pressure of work he was tired and had slight temperature but for the last three days the temperature has been normal and he hopes to leave for Karachi within the next few days.”

Published in Dawn, November 28th, 2022

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